• Every job comes with obstacles, but those obstacles aren’t always worth it; sometimes the right thing to do is quit your job and move on.
  • So, how can you determine if it’s time? The key is to consider your own role in your happiness at work; are you utilizing all that is in your control to have a good work day?
  • First, think about your thought patterns; if you’re engaging in a lot of negative thinking, then no wonder you’re unhappy at work! Adjust them accordingly.
  • Also, you should build small breaks into your schedule if you haven’t already; your brain needs a break every couple hours, so make it a rule of habit to take it.
  • Finally, foster positive relationships with your coworkers (whom you spend your everyday with) and take advantage of all the resources your company offers.
  • If you’ve tried these practice and find that you’re still unhappy at work, it might indeed be time for a change; a counselor or life coach can help you determine your next steps.

Here’s the thing: every job has its drawbacks. Finding a job that is completely void of obstacles you have to clear is next to impossible. And that’s because we’re human: we stress, a lot. We stress about upcoming deadlines and presentations; we stress about impressing our boss and even our coworkers. And sometimes this stress just builds and builds until we find ourselves pondering, “Is it time I quit my job? Has work become too much?”

It’s fair to say that sometimes a job is too much. If you find that you’re dreading going to work each day and you can’t wait until it’s time to go home, it’s probably time to call it quits. But first, you should consider this: you do have some control over your happiness at work. You have the power to make your day better—by adopting more positive thoughts, taking breaks when needed, developing supportive relationships with your coworkers and utilizing all of your company’s opportunities to succeed:

1) Narrow in on your thoughts and change them accordingly. First, think about your thought patterns. Are your thoughts fueling or even creating some of the problems you’re experiencing at work? “By being aware of ‘the shoulds’ (He/she should have given me a raise, better evaluation, etc.), labeling (What a jerk to steal my idea! I’m a loser to not have won the promotion), all or nothing thinking (I’ll never find another job if I lose this one!) we can compassionately counter these illogical patterns of thought and comfort ourselves with a more reassuring reality,” says Arlene Englander, licensed clinical social worker. “Self-talk, such as, ‘I did the best I could,’ or ‘The next time I’ll share my ideas with my director before that colleague,’ and ‘I don’t feel appreciated, but I can contact headhunters while I’m working and maybe find a better opportunity,’ help us—rather than berate ourselves—move forward with new confidence and succeed.”

2) Build small breaks to rest into your schedule. Also, if you aren’t taking a breather from your work every couple hours or so, you should start. “To prevent depressive thoughts and feelings from diminishing your happiness at work, it is important to make time throughout the work day to pause and rest,” says Laura Guzman, licensed marriage and family therapist. “Even 5 minutes away from your desk or computer, to move your body, shift your attention, take deep breaths or close your eyes, can act like a reset button for your nervous system. And, even better, when practiced consistently throughout your work day, these 5-minute moments of pause not only stave off depressive thoughts, they also increase your resiliency, creativity, and productivity at work.”

3) Surround yourself with strong social support and utilize your resources. Also, utilize what is at your disposal: the care of your coworkers and other opportunities within your company. “One of the best proven buffers for difficult job conditions is social support—and having coworkers who you feel connected to and who support you personally and professionally,” explains Bob Merberg, a workforce sustainability consultant. “In addition to creating a strong social circle, seeking exciting challenges at work and seeking other resources like professional development opportunities may help you manage a depressing job. Of course, it’s wise to work with a good manager to improve your situation, if possible.”

It’s true that small changes make for big outcomes. And it might just so happen that putting the above practices to the test will equal greater happiness for you at work. However, if you still feel unhappy and continue to question whether you should quit your job, it might be time to do so. And talking with a counselor or life coach about your specific situation can help you make the right decision moving forward.